maître d'

noun

maî·​tre d' ˌmā-trə-ˈdē How to pronounce maître d' (audio)
ˌme-,
-tər-
variants or maitre d'
plural maître d's or maitre d's ˌmā-trə-ˈdēz How to pronounce maître d' (audio)
ˌme-,
-tər-

Did you know?

Maître d' is short for maître d'hôtel, which comes from French and literally means "master of the house." Maître d'hôtel was used in English for a head butler or steward of a household before it referred to the head of a dining-room staff. For the record, the plural of maître d'hôtel is maîtres d'hôtel whereas the plural of maître d' is maître d's.

Example Sentences

Recent Examples on the Web Trust maitre d' Massimiliano to point you in the direction of the day's best catch; and trust his parents, Ruggero and Lucia, to cook it to perfection. Travel + Leisure, 6 July 2021 The maitre d' is heard explaining that the menu starts at 160 euros ($190) per person. Saskya Vandoorne And Rob Picheta, CNN, 6 Apr. 2021 Minasian and Karl Uecker, a maitre d', were responsible for escorting Kennedy through the hotel kitchen immediately after winning the California primary. Bob Nightengale, USA TODAY, 16 Mar. 2021 Mars has said the face was originally modeled after a Chicago maitre d' named Frank Brown. Alexandra Olson, chicagotribune.com, 24 Sep. 2020 Mars has said the face was originally modeled after a Chicago maitre d' named Frank Brown. Alexandra Olson, chicagotribune.com, 24 Sep. 2020 Mars has said the face was originally modeled after a Chicago maitre d' named Frank Brown. Alexandra Olson, chicagotribune.com, 24 Sep. 2020 Mars has said the face was originally modeled after a Chicago maitre d' named Frank Brown. Alexandra Olson, chicagotribune.com, 24 Sep. 2020 Mars has said the face was originally modeled after a Chicago maitre d' named Frank Brown. Alexandra Olson, chicagotribune.com, 24 Sep. 2020 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'maître d'.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

Word History

First Known Use

1933, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of maître d' was in 1933

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Cite this Entry

“Maître d'.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/ma%C3%AEtre%20d%27. Accessed 4 Dec. 2022.

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